Labour MPs who voted to block Brexit revel in their reprimands

Written by David Singleton on 20 February 2017 in Diary

Owen Smith is planning to frame his letter from the Labour chief whip.

Labour MPs who defied Jeremy Corbyn to vote against triggering Article 50 are making the most of the reprimand that has come their way.

All 52 of the party's MPs who voted against beginning the Brexit process are understood to have just received a formal warning about their future conduct from Labour chief whip Nick Brown.

Corbyn previously made it clear that MPs would not be allowed to defy the whip and remain in the shadow cabinet. As a result four MPs – Clive Lewis, Rachael Maskell, Dawn Butler and Jo Stevens – resigned.

The letter tells the various ‘rebel’ MPs that they are “required to comply with the whip in future”.

But a number of the recipients are showing few signs of remorse over their Brexit-bashing behaviour.

Pontypridd MP Owen Smith has previously said of his third reading vote in the Commons: “Whenever the election comes I will tell my constituents, with a clear conscience, that I stood up for my convictions, and what I believe to be their best interests."

After receiving his written reprimand, Smith revealed that he was thinking of framing the letter.

But Smith was beaten to it by fellow Labour MP Mike Gapes. The fast-moving member for Ilford South tweeted today that it was already in a frame. Gapes also said he had “a way to go” to match Jeremy Corbyn’s rebellion record.

Meanwhile Tottenham MP David Lammy proudly tweeted out his written reprimand, declaring: “Thanks, but this was a matter of conscience. I would do it again without hesitation.”













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